‘Take and Read’ includes essays reflecting theologically on books
Canadian Mennonite University invites the public to a launch event celebrating the release of Take and Read: Reflecting Theologically on Books, a new book written by Dr. Paul Doerksen, Associate Professor of Theology and Anabaptist Studies.
The event takes place Sunday, December 4 at 2:00 PM in the Atrium at McNally Robinson Booksellers (1120 Grant Ave.). Admission to the book launch is free, and all are welcome to attend.
These reflections introduce and offer samples of theological readings of a variety of books. The result is a collection of essays addressing a wide range of topics from food security to violence, from dementia to indigenous issues.
“I hope that anyone interested in joining conversations about any number of issues will read this book, because it really is a series of conversations with other books which address various topics,” Doerksen says.
Take and Read takes its name from a theological book discussion group that Doerksen has led since 2004 as part of CMU’s continuing education initiatives.
The group has included farmers, physicians, teachers, poets, novelists, scientists, people involved in business, finance, relief work, and many other walks of life, ranging in age from 20-something to 80.
Doerksen’s prepared reflections for these gatherings are never meant to draw conclusions about the books themselves, or about the topics addressed by the authors. Rather, the reflections serve as a starting point for the group’s conversation.
Reading the literary works that Doerksen discusses in his new book is not a prerequisite for enjoying the volume.
“My hope is that if you haven’t read the book and you read the essay about the book, it will drive you to it,” Doerksen says. “If you have, I hope the essay brings up connections and questions, and some evaluative dimensions in response to the book.”
Ultimately, Take and Read is a theological enterprise. The book is perhaps best described as an invitation to joining a conversation about books, and more importantly, about God.
“I hope that in reading the book, people join a conversation about something that is meaningful to them, and that they find something theologically meaningful in joining that conversation,” Doerksen says.
A professor at CMU since 2011, Doerksen has a PhD in Western Religious Thought from McMaster University. He also holds degrees from Conrad Grebel University College, the University of Winnipeg, and Briercrest Bible College.
He is the author of Beyond Suspicion: Post-Christendom Protestant Political Theology in John Howard Yoder and Oliver O`Donovan (Wipf and Stock, 2009).
A Christian university in the Anabaptist tradition, CMU’s Shaftesbury campus offers undergraduate degrees in arts, business, humanities, music, sciences, and social sciences, as well as graduate degrees in theology, ministry, peacebuilding and collaborative development, and an MBA. CMU has over 800 full-time equivalent students, including those enrolled in degree programs at the Shaftesbury and Menno Simons College campuses and in its Outtatown certificate program.
For information about CMU visit www.cmu.ca.
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Canadian Mennonite University
500 Shaftesbury Blvd., Winnipeg, MB R3P 2N2